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Showing posts from November 1, 2006

Book Reviews #39, #40, #41, #42, #43

I've finished two more books since I announced my recent reads, so I'll try to keep these reviews short, though I'm not always good at that. Here goes: Review #39 THE KILLING JAR by Nicola Monaghan (Scribner, April 2007) I have to admit this is one of those books that induced a groan when I got it in that Jiffy Pak mailer. Maybe it was the candy pills on the front cover, or the back cover copy comparing it to Irvine Welsh's TRAINSPOTTING. THE KILLING JAR looked like a sneering, adolescent, gratuitous drug trip of a book; not my favorite genre, as it tends to combine the self-dramatizing, overwritten prose I first encountered in my high school literary magazine with the self-righteous, damn-the-man self-destructiveness of drug culture. 'Scuse my snarkiness – I'm just not the Trainspotting audience, I guess. But Nicola Monaghan's story of growing up screwed up on one of Britain's "council estates" (suburban low-income housing projects) surpris